never put anything past anyone.
i used to hear that a lot growing up. i didn’t want to believe it to be true, considering the source of it, and i think i’ve bent and twisted myself in so many different ways these past few years to try and prove that it’s a lie. i want to see the good, i want to hold on to hope, i want to believe things will turn out all right…but the fact is that i am naive.
the reality is this: i hate it when i’m wrong. i hate it when i’ve invested time and emotion and hope and tears into something only to have it all come to naught in the end. it’s a blow to my pride, and it’s totally selfish. i feel so foolish, i get so angry. i see who people are, what they could be, and feel so powerless as i watch them fall back into old habits and set themselves up for more pain. over and over again. and yet, i continue to hang on. i know i must be doing something wrong here, and i am becoming convinced that this little spark of hope is actually a weapon being used against me, pushing me into the line of fire and forcing me to see the harsh reality of the human condition: the selfishness, the obsessions, the lies. you can never put anything past them. and what’s more, seeing the potential isn’t the same as seeing the reality. when you blur the line between the two, it’s a very dangerous thing. and that’s my fault. every. damn. time. any hurt that follows is a result of my foolishness.
i’ve had a lot of time to myself over this past holiday. and that’s how i wanted it. a lot of time to think…which can be a dangerous thing. it was terrifying. this has been one hell of a year. as i look back on it, so much is a blur, so much still hurts. i want to believe that 2016 will be a clean slate, that it will be the answer to all my questions and the balm to all my hurts…but i know it doesn’t work that way. i appreciated the opportunity to step out of my comfort zone, to let my rough edges be exposed, to apply what i’ve learned to difficult situations and relationships. it’s made a lot of things more real to me. there has been some good…but they’re more like silver linings to these dark clouds i’m left with. i’m not sure what to do with all these shattered pieces, with all this anger and frustration and confusion. as if i didn’t know that people hurt, that life isn’t fair, that change is hard…i guess i had to be reminded of how weak and powerless i am in the face of it all.
i have no idea what’s next. but i admit it now: i was wrong.
i bet that got your attention, didn’t it? don’t worry though, it’s not directed towards you. it’s for me.
that’s what i hear in my head when i feel like i’ve screwed up.
i’ll bend over backwards for other people. i’ll extend grace to the point where it’s probably unhealthy. i’m forgiving, kind and self-sacrificing. i’ll pour my being into helping someone else, especially when i care about them. but if it’s me? oh, if you only heard my inner mantra. anytime i make a mistake or do something i think i shouldn’t, i abuse myself inwardly… it could be something totally ridiculous, like spilling my coffee. or something worse, like sin. or just making an honest mistake — the words i use, the thoughts i have…there’s so much anger drawn inwards it’s insane. i don’t like admitting this.
it’s not my voice i hear. it comes from the past. a past where i lived in fear, could never do anything right and was belittled and literally beaten for my mistakes. i am so damn sick of the past. i am so sick of things coming up, especially when i’m weak with the struggles of life already. i know i speak for a lot of people in recovery when i say, when will it all be over? i have been begging God for something good to happen. i mean, genuinely. i am so sick of finding the silver linings in all these friggin storm clouds. just something real and good that i can embrace, trust and believe in.
there are very few people out there who can understand. i mean, really understand. honestly, unless you’re in my head or have been through the uglier side of life, you can’t. and what’s more, there’s even fewer who are willing to try to get in…granted, i don’t make it easy. and there is nothing worse than being hurt by others, because on top of that is me tormenting myself because i feel so foolish and ignorant for trusting. and now i expect to be hurt, i expect to be disappointed…almost because i feel like i deserve it. where is the grace for myself? where is the love and the patience that i have for others?
if you’ve ever read the scarlet letter, there’s a character in it that literally whips themselves because of guilt they have over something wrong they did. that’s me. except i can’t for the life of me figure out what the hell it is…so i make the most of every opportunity i fail.
i would never punish and torment anyone the way i do myself.
i wonder sometimes at how i am able to have such a capacity for extremes.
- considering how i once had such a depth for hatred.
- that i once possessed such an ugly, violent temper.
- how my words could be so harsh and cutting and cruel.
- how i could once so coolly and easily lie.
believe it or not, that was all me at one point. and at times, shadows of all this still pass over me. i know i am still capable of it. my humanity is so real.
- and then there is where i am now. how the pursuit of understanding true love and being a channel for it has become my foremost desire.
- how i practice patience and understanding in a way i never thought i was capable of.
- how i want my words to be a source of life and encouragement.
- that i desire nothing but the truth in all things. even to the point where people think i’m ridiculous.
i drive myself crazy sometimes wondering how such a small human being such as myself can hold so many contradictions. how am i still alive? how have i not been struck down?
what’s funny is the areas i have such a capacity for wrong and weakness in, i have such a drive and desire to contradict. to be like Him all the more…but every now and then i give in. i’m ugly. i’m mean. i’m a house divided. how am i not continuously falling? no one frustrates me more than me.
paul says nothing good lives in me. but, then again, He does.